Recap of Content Marketing World Day 1 – How To Apply The Learnings

While Content Marketing World started Monday with some workshops in the afternoon, the real festivities started yesterday morning with an introduction from Joe Pulizzi founder of Content Marketing Institute and keynotes from Andrew Davis, author of Brandscaping and Julie Fleischer, Director, Data+Content+Media of Kraft Foods.


Through the day, starting with the keynotes and into the breakout sessions, there were some key themes that began to emerge from each session:

–          Content marketers must align content to their buyers purchase path in order to be most effective

–          Content must resonate – “create empathy” was a phrase used several times, to initiate a response from our buyers

–          Measurement is key – “if you do not have a goal with measurements in place, you are wasting your time on content” said one of the panelists

–          The silos that exist in many organizations are an obstacle to successful content.  There has to be a collaborative, common governance to content creation in organization

All of these insights and instructions are exactly right, but there was one mention early in the morning that has kept me thinking all day.  In his introductory address, Joe Pulizzi shared some initial findings from the 2015 Content Marketing Research they conduct every year.  The study showed that despite all of the hype, all of the participation, all of the money and all of the focus on content marketing, a paltry 38% of those surveyed claim effectiveness with their content marketing.  ONLY 38%!

This is alarming to say the least and while it is great to see 2,500 people at an event like Content Marketing World soaking up information and burning up the Twitter stream at what seems like 250 tweets per minute, there has to be some application of all this learning in our day-to-day worlds.

How do we make this happen? How does one leave Content Marketing World and drive the effectiveness percentage higher?  Here are a few tips:

1. Start Somewhere

In the Demand Generation Workshop I led on Monday, one attendee asked me “we are a billion dollar plus organization, where do I start with making some of the changes and applying this learning without disrupting the entire business?”  The answer was simple, pick an area of the business where you can pilot the new approach. By taking this approach you are able to prove out the model, have very little disruption to the business and provide more value by incrementally driving more revenue and interaction with customers through developing a strategic content marketing plan.

2. Show Some Patience

Often times the impulse is to come back from an event such as this all geared up and ready to roll and at the first sign of an obstacle or divergence in the approach all hope is lost, discouragement sets in and the approach is aborted.  Keep in mind, implementing the strategies learned in these sessions and making them stick takes time and will come with challenges.  Be patient, yet assertive and drive the change.

3.  Don’t Stop Learning

There is always room to grow and learn and it should not stop once you leave Content Marketing World.  Be sure to continue the learning as you go.  Get involved in online groups, attend CMI and other marketing focused webinars, read all you can and register for online training.  Do what you can to ensure you are developing the skills necessary to make a difference and fill the gap that currently exists.

It has been a great Day 1 of Content Marketing World and I suspect that Day 2 will have the same impact.  However, if effectiveness still hovers at 38%, it may all just be for naught.

Author: Carlos Hidalgo @cahidalgo is CEO and Principal, ANNUITAS

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